The pink colour of the outburst tells us that the solar wind on November 22nd was unusually penetrating. The colours of the aurora are determined by the composition of gases in the Earth's atmosphere, the altitude at which the aurora occurs, the density of the atmosphere, and the level of energy involved. Green, the most common colour seen from the ground, is produced when charged particles collide with oxygen at lower altitudes (around 100 - 300 km / 62 - 186 miles). Occasionally, the lower edge of an aurora will have a pink or crimson fringe, which is produced by nitrogen molecules (around 100 km / 62 miles).
Higher in the atmosphere (300 - 400 km / 186 - 250 miles), collisions with atomic oxygen produce red instead of green. Since the atmosphere is less dense at higher altitudes, it takes more energy and more time to produce red light (up to two minutes), whereas green light can be made quickly at lower altitudes (about one second). Hydrogen and helium can also produce blue and purple, but those colours tend to be difficult for our eyes to see against the night sky.
In recent winters, great displays of pink and white auroras have coincided with spotless Suns often enough to make observers believe there is a connection. More outbursts are in the offing as the Sun continues its plunge toward a deep Solar Minimum.
Featured image: Pink aurora over Tromsø, Norway on November 22, 2017. Credit: Frank Meissner (via SpaceWeather)